Our new Presiding Bishop, Michael Curry, has challenged us to go to Galilee. And so the question arises ... where is Galilee for you? Where is that place in the world where God's dream needs to be born in the midst of "nightmares of our own devising"? Where do you meet the risen Christ?
I go to Galilee every Tuesday morning. From 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., I have my office hours in a coffee shop. Currently, that coffee shop is the Grand Traverse Pie Company, known to some of the folks in the congregation as the "Holy Spirit Pie Store," because God enters the conversations here in a major way.
I always order the same thing: a skim latte and chocolate chip cookie. (The barista knows my 'usual' by now.) And I always sit at the same table, a two-top next to the window. I always wear my collar. I am present in the world outside the church walls, present as a sign of God's love for and engagement with the world.
Sometimes, no one comes to join me, and I sit and answer email. But often, someone will stop for a chat ... another regular who likes the leather, fireside armchair behind me. My friends from the Bah'ai community are sometimes there, too. Sometimes a member of the parish drops in for a chat, or a deeper conversation about life and how God is working in that life. I have planned our first same-sex wedding at that table, with a couple who has waited 29 years to be joined in the sight of God and the state. Sometimes more than one person pulls up a chair, and it becomes a true kaffee klatch. Sometimes, a stranger sits down. "I read on your website that you have office hours here. Can I talk to you?" ... about a marriage in trouble, a new struggle, a question about God.
This is my Galilee, a spot in our own community, where I see old friends, welcome new ones, pray, listen, and sometimes just eat a cookie and drink a cup of coffee. Where sometimes that cookie and coffee become a symbol of something deeper, a connection to the sacred Sunday meal, a connection between me and another human being, between the two of us and God.
I meet HIM there. The Risen One.
It is a Holy place.